ENTREPRENEURS in York are being offered free business support following the launch of a new start-up centre.

York St John University has launched dedicated facilities to lend free expert help for fledgling businesses.

The Enterprise Centre, on York St John's main Lord Mayor's Walk campus, provides professional corporate accommodation which businesses can take advantage of rent free for their first six months.

The centre offers direct on-site access to academic expertise, including coaching and mentoring workshops from York Business School, as well as support with digital marketing, growth planning, finance skills and bid writing.

Entrepreneurs can also access free expert help via the York & North Yorkshire Growth Hub.

Working with the Growth Hub provides instant access to the latest governmental advice and support.

As the only university in Yorkshire with a campus in London, there will also be the opportunity to take advantage of business space in York St John’s new campus facility near Canary Wharf where entrepreneurs can meet with clients and hold meetings.

Director of business development & knowledge exchange at York St John, Marc Fleetham said: “We’re delighted to launch the Enterprise Centre here on campus, offering an accessible, local platform for ambitious minds to realise their goals.

“Our doors are open to provide ongoing CPD and training, to grow local talent and keep it here in York. This aligns with the city’s skills strategy of addressing local skills challenges and raising productivity for long term growth.

“The partnership with the Growth Hub will make sure that businesses are plugged in to what local and national support is available to them, and how to make best use of what’s out there.”

Growth Hub manager Andrew Raby said: "Regardless of size or sector, we are here to provide free and independent business support.

"We are government-funded but locally based, which means that we can provide tailored support based around the needs of our unique region.

“Working so closely with York St John will bring together fresh academic insights and expert guidance from people who have been there and done it, in a professional environment with a community of peers who can support each other through the challenges of establishing a new business.”

Enterprise Centre manager Emma Rollason-Taylor said: “We’re looking forward to welcoming York’s entrepreneurs through the doors and helping them to develop their ideas and fledgling businesses.

"With academic expertise on tap plus the Growth Hub’s connections to financial support, people that we work with really are getting the best of both worlds.

"It's exciting to see what will grow from these firm foundations.”

The Enterprise Centre is open Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm.

It features a shared bookable space for up to 20 people and virtual tenants can use it as a city centre address.

For details, contact business@yorksj.ac.uk.